We break down the leaked Battlefield Hardline trailer

battlefield hardline

Update: it’s been pulled but can still be downloaded from here. Original story is below.

Here we go! It’s a leaked trailer for Battlefield Hardline and there’s a mega-ton of information that comes with it. Watch the video until EA’s legal team inevitably pulls it from existence.

Battlefield Hardline, which is confirmed for a Fall 2014 release switches out the action from soldiers to cops and robbers in urban combat situations. It would have been impossible to pump out another military-themed shooter because at this point, we’re literally drowning in them. Will modern-day urban warfare become the new theme for shooters?

Here’s the information breakdown from the video.

I won’t be posting images of the video as it’s watermarked ‘confidential property of EA, do not distribute.’


Battlefield has always been about teamwork and playing with friends. When a squad works together, few games can be as rewarding.” The multiplayer modes will be built with tactical coordination in mind, and the video shows squads summiting into war zones via zip-lines, looking rather coordinated. Teamwork will be needed for the new multiplayer modes, which include Heist: robbers try to steal the cash, cops block them. Rescue: SWAT attempts to rescue hostages in an “event gone wrong”. Hotwire: cops chase stolen cars over enormous maps and Blood Money: where players fight over a “huge pile of cash”.

The single player Omaha campaign looks excellent

It begins with Omaha, a city in Nebraska and the centre of Battlefield Hardline’s story. And yes, there’s an actual story this time scribed by Dead Space developers Visceral (who’ve teamed up with Dice) and according to the video it’s going to “revitalise the single player campaign with Omaha.” There’s a hero now, a cop named Nick Mendoza who’s caught up in a “personal struggle between right and wrong.” He’ll be travelling across the country apparently as he tracks down those in the force who wronged him. Mendoza’s rogues’ gallery will range from coke dealers to deranged billionaires, and each level will be “structured like an episode, cliffhangers and all.”

Voicing the characters are actors from Justified, The Americans and House of Cards — but not Kevin Spacey, he’s too busy with Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare.

Gameplay-wise, the video states how everything is “wider, and more open than ever before,” with enemy AI redesigned from the ground up. For the first time in Battlefield history, missions can now be replayed multiple times and in multiple ways — Battlefield single-player missions are infamous for their linearity so it’s heartwarming to know that we’ll have options this time. Stealth, setting up sniper spots and all-out warfare are options now with each single player mission.

Downtown destruction 

Battlefield Hardline may have the best use of destructible environments yet and “you’ll visit urban American cities to create mayhem.” We saw a grow-lab being shot up, the glass-roofed train station from Modern Warfare 3, a bank vault and even a car dealership, which is a first for any shooter. “Modern, sexy and highly destructible. It’s the most visually diverse Battlefield yet,” intones the narrator.

Gadget, guns and grenades

Handcuff head-smashing and zip-lines — this caught our attention as well as the sawed-off shotgun and tasers (all new to Battlefield). A gadget load-out screen was quickly shown as the player customised Mendoza’s pistol. The player will also have access to a police scanner which adds a “second layer to the story” due to clue scanning, which looked a lot like the system from Condemned. The scanning aspect nets Mendoza extra cash, as he can scan suspects for outstanding police records and then, we guess, arrest them. The scanner also (like in Watch Dogs) will highlight enemies on the map and reveal their location in the game world.

It’s in multiplayer where the gadgets get to shine, and we chuckled at players zip-lining to their deaths. Grappling hooks and zip-lines will add a wacky edge to the Battlefield universe as players quickly traverse the maps. But what’s a Battlefield game without vehicles? Hardline is no exception and the video shows police cars and helicopters, motorbikes, counterattack trucks, boats, muscle cars, planes and armed choppers. Imagine dashing around the map on a motorbike with C4 strapped to your back… and don’t worry because “knocking a chopper out of the sky is still the greatest thrill in gaming.”

That’s the leaked trailer. With some luck, EA will be showing off more at E3 2014.

Steven Norris: grumpy curmudgeon


Sign up to our newsletter to get the latest in digital insights. sign up

Welcome to Memeburn

Sign up to our newsletter to get the latest in digital insights.